Follow these steps:
1. Make a list of hurtful words with the children that you both have said in an argument with someone and that you were sorry about afterward. Words like: you are a loser, stupid, lazy, a liar, and I hate you, etc.
2. Make another list of helpful words or compliments that you both have said. Like: you’re smart, you can do this, I love you, thank you for your help, etc.
3. Pour three spoons of sugar into the bowl. The bowl represents a person, and the sugar represents the helpful words and compliments. Allow them to taste some of the sugar, relating the sweetness to the good feeling we get from these words.
4. Now take the salt shaker, the salt represents the hurtful words. Have your child shake the salt into the bowl with sugar as he repeats some of the hurtful words he wrote on the list. And mix it with the sugar.
5. Points to reflect on:
Ask the children to taste the mixture and ask the following questions:
Is the mixture as tasty as it was with only the sugar? (No).
Why not? (Because there is salt mixed in with the sugar.)
Can the salt and sugar be separated? (It would be impossible to separate the two).
What can be done to make it tasty again? (Add more sugar).
By adding more sugar would the salt disappear? (No, however, the more sugar you add, the less you will be able to taste the salt).
What actions can you take to make the other person feel better? (apologize, write a note or a letter, draw a picture, or make a small gift, etc.)
Remember that children must not leave with a sense of guilt. Remind them that using hurtful words as a reaction to reactive feelings is very common and everyone, including adults, falls for it. It is all about being aware of the power of our words and trying to pause before we talk so we can have the chance to choose more wisely.
Learn more about our full curriculum:
Our step-by-step social emotional learning curriculum teaches children 8-12 years old how to understand and manage their emotions while equipping them with the tools to boost their confidence and ignite their compassion for others. Embark on a multimedia adventure in two levels filled with creative exercises and relatable characters all from the comfort of your own home.